2020…. a year with a twist, to say the least!

2020…. a year with a twist, to say the least!

2020…. a year with a twist, to say the least!

History in the making, patience, and resilience plus many other lessons have been learnt since the pandemic occurred in March.

I would like to begin by saying, I am incredibly proud of my team who have worked tirelessly and safely to keep our practice running efficiently and keeping all build projects moving at great pace during the unprecedented times of 2020.  

Throughout the year we have seen an incredible range of exciting projects, working with some of the ‘best in the business’ within the planning, development, and construction sectors.  

The practice has enjoyed a couple of significant staff appointments and an exceptionally well-deserved promotion for a key member of our team.   

We continue to be nominated for some incredibly prestigious architectural awards and in November, we celebrated a market-leading accolade win for ‘Barn Conversions in Essex”.  

MP Architects LLP would like to express our sincere thanks for the loyalty and goodwill of our customers, friends, suppliers, and acquaintances in 2020.  We are all excited by the opportunities within the local community that lie ahead for us in 2021. 

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a Merry Christmas, whatever tier you find yourself in and may your holiday season be filled with laughter, joy, and peace.   

Wishing you happiness and well-being for a prosperous New Year.  

Best wishes and stay safe.

Martyn Pattie 

Our Christmas Opening Hours 

Thursday 24th December – Closing at 12.00 pm

Friday 25th December – Office Closed

Monday 28th December – Office Closed

Tuesday 29th December – Office Closed 

Wednesday 30th December – Office Closed 

Thursday 31st December – Office Closed 

Friday 1st January – Office Closed

Office re-opening on Monday 4 January 2021


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

Emerging from Lockdown to Tier 2

COVID-Secure Essex Architects

As Essex emerges from lockdown and enters the restrictions of Tier 2, we find ourselves with a new set of rules to navigate. 

Short of a Christmas miracle, it seems that we will be working within the new tier 2 restrictions for the near future…..So, whilst hanging up the Christmas decorations and keeping our festive spirits high, we want you to know that we are just as committed to working safely with you on your build project throughout the festive season and beyond.  

We have robust measures in place to allow our team to work safely and diligently ‘on-site’ and ‘off-site’ following the Governments ‘Hands, Face, Space’ ethos. All of our clients have access to virtual meetings and our superb video conferencing options. When on-site, we will always wear a face covering, adhere to sanitising and the physical distancing rules, by keeping 2 metres apart.  

We hope you will find it reassuring to know there are still many ways we can work together effectively and efficiently to move your project forward in a COVID-secure environment throughout the Christmas holiday period and beyond.  

Happy Advent to you all. Stay healthy. 

Martyn Pattie 


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

You Are What You Breathe – MVHR Systems

Shining the spotlight on the ‘Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery Systems’ For New Build Homes

In recent months client requests for installing MVHR systems are becoming increasingly popular. Let’s face it, when building a new home, who wouldn’t want to include a product that improves indoor air quality, reduces energy bills, preserves the fabric of the building and supports the net-zero movement? 

Nowadays, due to strict standards for insulation and airtightness, new homes and renovated dwellings are incredibly energy efficient, however these measures can affect ventilation and have a negative impact on the home air quality.  

Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery is a whole-house ventilation system that both extracts and supplies fresh filtered, temperature-controlled air throughout the property. It offers a balanced low energy ventilation solution for new build dwellings and re-uses up to 95% of the heat that would otherwise have been lost.  

In layman’s terms, the MVHR uses a quiet fan that draws the stale air out and pumps fresh air in throughout the property and via a grid of concealed pipes. 

MVHR systems are a clever solution to provide controlled ventilation of filtered air that has an abundance of benefits, especially for allergy prevention. 

By including an MVHR in your build project, you can guarantee the perfect indoor temperature, great quality air flow as opposed to weather dictating ventilation, and the elimination of bad odours, damp, mould, and fungus. 

When budgeting for your new home project, the inclusion of an MVHR method can be seen as quite an investment however, the small amount of energy used by the system to operate compared to conventional heating and air conditioning solutions can guarantee substantial savings on heating costs and support the reduction of your CO2 footprint, helping towards more sustainable living.  


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

COVID Statement

As we respond and adapt to a second national lockdown we wanted to take a moment to reassure you that our team will continue to provide our clients with the best design and customer service they deserve and that health of our staff and clients remains paramount. 

We will encourage, where possible for staff and clients to hold video conferences or conference calls.  

Appointments and on-site surveys that have been booked will continue to go ahead, and in these circumstances our staff will always wear a face covering and adhere to sanitising and physical distancing rules, by keeping 2 metres apart. 

We request that anyone we have met in the last 14 days who thinks they are at risk of contracting coronavirus to call us immediately so we can advise the staff concerned.  We also ask that you inform us if you are feeling unwell prior to our visit in order to be rearranged. 

We look forward to working safely and responsibly with new and existing clients safely and effectively in a COVID-secure environment throughout the pandemic and beyond.  

Stay healthy 

Martyn Pattie 


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

MP Architects wins top award for Bringing Essex Barns Back to Life.

MP Architects LLP have won the BUILD 2020 Architecture Award – Best Contemporary Barn Conversions – Essex  

This annual awards cornerstone, which is in its 5th year, highlights the extraordinary work and expertise of Architects across the globe.  

MP Architects LLP were awarded this impressive accolade by a panel of industry leaders in recognition of our expertise and skill that strikes the perfect balance of historic fabric with modern tastes when designing and transforming unused agricultural buildings into beautiful Essex homes, Offices and Commercial buildings. 

Seen as a clear front runner in this category for our innovative yet practical design and commitment to the use of environmentally-friendly reclaimed building materials wherever possible, we were recognised for undoubtedly embodying the very heart of architecture with a desire to push boundaries and stay ahead of the curve. 

Click here to see the Build official announcement.

Discussing the success of these deserving winners, Awards Coordinator Kaven Cooper praised the programme’s winners: “The Architecture Awards highlight only those who have proven themselves as paragons in the sector. I am proud to recognise them and wish them the best of luck for the future.” 

Martyn Pattie – BA Arch (Oxford), Dip Arch (Oxford), RIBA, ARB commented,  “We are incredibly proud to receive this award. As specialists in the Barn arena, we are delighted to be recognised for our long-standing history of working with some incredibly rewarding barn conversions in Essex.  My team of highly skilled RIBA Accredited Chartered Architects prides themselves on supporting barn owners to achieve great designs for seamless flow and wonderful living spaces that they desire from a barn conversion along with rapid planning permission. We look forward to continuing to build on our success of this award with some very exciting projects in the pipeline” 

If you own or are considering buying a redundant agricultural building to convert into a home, workshop, or office space, let us share our award-winning knowledge and design expertise with you. 


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

Open with Confidence and COVID Secure

Can I continue to work with MP Architects on my build project during the tier 2 & 3 lockdown?

In response to the on-going pandemic, we wanted to help you understand how you can continue to work with us on your build project. 

After months of uncertainty from the impact of COVID-19 and the continuous changing of rules and regulations, we have taken some practical steps to ensure our Architectural planning and design service can continue safely and effectively. 

As always, we are committed to providing excellent Architectural excellence with the Health and Safety of our staff and customers being paramount. 

We are frequently reviewing the Public Health England guidelines and have put robust measures in place to allow our team to work safely and diligently following the Governments ‘Hands, Face, Space’ ethos. 

Currently, there is no limit to the group size when you are meeting or gathering for work purposes, however, all of our clients have the access to virtual meetings and our superb video conferencing options.  

Where it is necessary to be on-site, we will always wear a face covering and adhere to sanitising and physical distancing rules, by keeping 2 metres apart. 

As much as we know ‘business as normal’ is not a phrase we will be using any time soon, it is reassuring for you to know that even in the event of a tier 3 lockdown there are still many ways we can continue to work together to move your project forward. 

We look forward to working with new and existing clients safely and effectively in a COVID-secure environment throughout the pandemic and beyond. 


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

Make Working from Home Work for You

Millions of people have been forced to work from home since the coronavirus outbreak in what could be described as the biggest remote working experiment in history. 

It is without a doubt that working from home can have a positive effect on both your work and life balance, and in a ‘post-crisis’ world you may want to continue this way of living.

Studies have proved that the most common benefit of home working is the elimination of the unrelenting commute. By not traveling to work you can save time and money all whilst having a positive impact on the environment. 

As well as making far better business sense, the extra time may also  provide more you with opportunities to see your family, exercise, cook healthier meals, complete household chores or simply just catch up on an extra hour of sleep.

The technology capability to support valuable working from home is solid and available, however, you do need to be in the right ‘zone’ to be happy and productive. Slouching on the sofa with a laptop or hunched over the kitchen table is far from an ideal work environment. 

By creating a separate office environment you can retain a professional and productive workspace whilst ensuring privacy and less opportunity to be distracted.

Have you considered setting up a home office as a separate structure from your home? This will create a clear distinction between home and work life, especially if your work demands a quiet space away from family life and a barking dog!

Could it be a possibility that you may need to invite colleagues or clients to your home office in the future?  A light and airy garden office, stylish garage conversion, or beautiful home extension could be the perfect place to create the professional arena you may need. 

MP Architects can support you with identifying the best position to situate your home office and create the perfect professional working environment that will retain your privacy and increase productivity.  Also, where necessary we will obtain quick and simple planning permission if your outbuilding falls outside the boundaries of permitted development.

We are here to help you to commit and define this new way of working life.   Your new home office will help you focus and increase efficiency, whilst also giving you the opportunity for mid-morning coffee breaks with your partner, walking the dog at lunchtime, or just clocking off at 5pm to relax in the evening sunshine with a delicious G&T.


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

G & T
G & T

Making your home the best version of itself during COVID-19

So, life in general is on hold, schools are shut, lunch with friends is off-limits and a quick pint down the pub has to be postponed.

That’s right, the Government has asked us to stay inside to protect the NHS and the health of the nation.

Some say this is a time to sleep and binge on box sets or even learn a new skill. Whilst it is true that we should all use this down-time to recharge and re-boot our own systems, it is also a golden opportunity to make the most of this recess and stop procrastinating over house plans that have been just an intention and not a reality due to your normal everyday time constraints.

You may love your home, but being hunkered down in it right now with your nearest and dearest could have you thinking that there simply isn’t enough space for you all. 

Recent Government advice is that all house moves should be put on hold wherever possible until the COVID-19 situation is less demanding, that coupled with the inevitable temporary slump in the economy, a new home is probably off of the menu.  

So, how about you use this period of self-isolation as the perfect time to consider how you can add value or improve your home to make it the best it can be.

Have you been considering some renovations in the form of a top floor extension, conversion of a garage, an extra bedroom, and bathroom, a garden room, home office or if you’re lucky enough an in-house haven just to get away from it all?

MP Architects LLP is a local experienced company that can help you improve your home to make it the best version of itself.  

Our dedicated team are working remotely but just as effectively throughout the COVID_19 crisis to support and advise homeowners with ideas, drawings, layouts and plans.  

Our extensive knowledge means that we can advise you on planning permission requirements, specialising in the recently relaxed rights of permitted development, so you may not even need to go through the traditional planning permission channels to create your perfect space.

Please contact us at any time via email, telephone and our easy to use virtual meeting resources to discuss how we can help you design your perfect project.

We would love to hear from you.

Stay healthy.

5 Small developments that show why investing in good design pays dividends for developers

Homebuyers are attracted to new build properties because they are ready to move into, require very little work to maintain in the short term, appear to be highly specified and, can be cheaper than older, local housing.

However, new build homes have acquired a poor reputation for quality – cracking mortar, shoddy brickwork, faulty drainage, second-rate fittings, sub-standard finishing as well as poor street layouts and lighting among the many complaints regularly made.

Many purchasers realise that their property was not built to last and, rather than accruing value, will lose value and be difficult to sell in the long term. This has tarnished the reputation of many developers.

Developers are also charged with cramming smaller homes onto a site in what they perceive as a way of extracting the maximum profit from a project. In their defence, they state that the price of land, rising production expenses and increasing material costs preclude investment in build quality, architectural design and planning.

 

We would argue that quality design sells!

Only by investing in better design can developers really maximise the value of development in a way that enhances and builds their reputation. This is supported by data from London estate agency ‘The Modern House’ which shows well-designed homes average a 12% premium in value over other properties in an area.

Poorly designed homes and housing schemes can be considerably more costly to a developer in the long run, both in terms of the cost of ‘making good’ post-construction and in potential legal claims.

 

Architectural design and quality space in a home really matters

What happens if we think outside the box a little and design homes that fit the local environment and provide higher quality living spaces?

At M P Architects we understand that property developers want to maximise the profit on their projects. However, filling a plot with small homes is not the only way to capitalise on its potential.

We understand value creation and believe ‘real value’ to a developer can be created in many ways. While how a property looks, its ‘kerb appeal’, is one key value driver, equally important is how a property ’feels’. Interior specification, for example, is about more than just selecting expensive materials – considered layouts to meet patterns of habitation, highly functional fittings and modern, easy to maintain finishes all need to come together to create spaces that people really want to live in.

 

Our ‘holistic’ approach

At M P Architects we have built our reputation on the integrity of our designs, delivery of projects and our attention to detail.

We utilise our extensive design, planning and negotiation expertise to:

  • Create environments that facilitate and support contemporary life
  • Contribute to efficient and effective planning
  • Reduce the running and life cycle costs of new homes
  • Specify efficient materials and construction processes
  •  Ensure that the maximum value is generated from every project

We pride ourselves on our ability to intelligently configure housing within a given site to create exemplary living spaces while also satisfying the financial restrictions and expected returns of developers.

And importantly, our local knowledge of the area and of its specific planning processes allows us to achieve a high level of submission success.

Take a look at 5 of our small development case studies that showcase how our design, technical and planning expertise has added value:

 

M P Architects LLP are a RIBA and ARB registered friendly team of 8 architectural staff who provide added value through affordable high-quality design thinking, technical knowledge, and planning expertise. Why not give us a call to discuss your next development and see how we can help you to truly maximise your next opportunity.